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Posted: Sunday, January 18, 2015 10:00 pm | Updated: 1:31 am, Mon Jan 19, 2015.

(Family Features) Chilly outside? Nothing warms like a steaming bowl of soup. If thoughts of a cozy and comforting pot of soup make you hungry, here is a recipe that's short on time, but long on flavor and satisfaction.

Forget about a tedious ingredient list and lots of simmering time. Italian-Style Greens & Beans Soup is a shortcut that you will turn to again and again. This hearty, rustic bean soup with homemade from-scratch flavor can be on the table in about 20 minutes. The secret is a can of READ Greens and Beans with Sausage, a seasoned combination of white kidney beans, collard greens, tomatoes and sausage. It makes a delicious, easy side dish but is also a great kick-start to a mouth-watering pot of soup. Just add broth and a few simple ingredients, give it a quick simmer, and stir in a healthy handful of kale or spinach. Then, sprinkle with shredded Parmesan cheese just before serving and soup's on.

This soup can be a quick supper for the family or the main dish for casual entertaining. If you're feeding a crowd, that's no problem, as the recipe can easily be doubled. Accompaniments can be as simple as a crusty whole grain baguette and fresh fruit. Open a bottle of Sangiovese or Chianti to add a special touch for entertaining.

For additional information about READ Greens and Beans visit www.facebook.com/READsalads.

Italian-Style Green & Beans Soup

Recipe: Italian-Style Green & Beans Soup

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup crumbled Italian sausage
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 3/4 teaspoon Italian seasoning blend
  • 1 can (14.5 ounces) reduced-sodium, fat free chicken broth
  • 1 can (15 ounces) READ Greens & Beans with Sausage
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped red bell pepper
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced kale or spinach (packed)
  • Shredded Parmesan cheese (optional)

Preparation:

  1. Cook onion, sausage, garlic and Italian seasoning in large nonstick saucepan over medium heat until sausage is completely cooked, about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  2. Add broth, Greens & Beans and red pepper; simmer 3 minutes. Stir in kale. Sprinkle with cheese, if desired.

Servings: 3 to 4

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